The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 428,000 in April, following revised increases of 428,000 in March and 714,000 in February. In the first four months of 2022, nearly 2.1 million jobs were created, and monthly employment grew at an average rate of 519,000 jobs per month.
Statistics Canada reported today its Labor Force Survey for April 2022. Employment in Canada was little changed in April. Previously, employment increased by 409,000 (2.1%) during February and March, following losses in January, the result of the fifth wave of COVID-19. The unemployment rate edged down a further -0.1 percentage points to 5.2%.
Vaagen Fibre Canada’s Midway Mill is back in operation following a four-week planned shutdown, which started on April 4, 2022. Plant Manager Darryl Reekie said the shutdown was a way to conduct a thorough check-up on the health of all machinery and ensure a smooth-running operation for the remainder of the year.
In today’s briefing, the NIFC is reporting that 1 new wildfire was burning in Colorado. Nationally, nearly 3,400 wildland firefighters and support personnel are assigned to 10 large fires. The Southwest area continues to have the largest fire activity, where five incident management teams are assigned.
According to the latest Mortgage Banker Association’s (MBA) National Delinquency Survey (NDS), released today (5-5-22), the delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties decreased to a seasonally adjust rate of 4.11% of all loans outstanding at the end of Q1 of 2022.
Freddie Mac has released its Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) for the week ending May 5, 2022. The PMMS reports that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 5.27% with an average 0.9 point, up from last week when it averaged 5.10%. A year ago, at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.96%.
According to the latest Job Cut Report from Challenger, Gray & Christmas (CG&C), Inc, U.S.-based employers announced 24,286 cuts in April 2022. This is a 14% increase from the 21,387 cuts announced in March 2022, and it is up 6% year-over-year from the 22,913 cuts announced in April 2021.
The U.S. Department of Labor is reporting that an additional 200,000 Americans (seasonally adjusted) made their initial filing for unemployment benefits during the week ending on Saturday, April 30, 2022. This is an increase of 19,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The 4-week moving average was 188,000.
Since the closure of Paper Excellence Company’s Northern Pulp Mill in Nova Scotia in January of 2020, local sawmill operators have seen their steady and ample supply of sawlogs continue to erode. Local sawmill and trucking company owners’ operations stories all have a common theme: The loss of the pulp market has made woodlot harvesting less viable.
HS Timber Group, one of Europe’s leading wood processing companies with exports destinations to over 70 countries, announced it is expanding its product portfolio with its acquisition of 100% of the shares in the Finnish sawmill Luvian Saha Oy, whose products are known under the brand name “Luvia Wood.”